Arcteryx Beta AR womens Jacket Review 2016

Features

The Gore-Tex Pro used is one of the most rugged materials on the market: it’s stormproof, abrasion-resistant and intensely breathable. The material here is reinforced at the shoulders and forearms to make it even more durable. As well as a helmet-compatible, stiffened hood, the Arc’teryx Beta AR also has a separate collar with a micro-suede chinguard. Two outer pockets take an OS map (just) and the interior one swallows a smartphone. 5/5

Fit

The Arc’teryx Beta AR is available in XS-XL for women and XS-XXL for men. The cut is very good, with articulated elbows and gusseted underarms for a full range of movement, without the cuffs or hem riding up. It’s roomy enough to house warm layers but still neatly fitted, with enough length for a little bum protection too. The hood fits very snugly and moves almost perfectly with the head. 5/5

Comfort

There are softer materials available, but not many more durable, so this is a choice – it’s slightly stiff but tough, breathable and unbelievably light. When you’re being blasted by wind and ice, though, you want to feel snugly protected and you do in this, the very good cut elevating comfort levels. And if you get too hot, you can always undo the pit zips. 5/5 

In use

The Arc’teryx Beta AR offers high levels of protection, yet it’s still light and very comfy – which is impressive. The pockets zip close downwards, which is unusual but helps prevent water ingress; and getting an OS map in the smaller opening is a little awkward. There are only minor issues here, which may not be problematic for you: the hood peak is unwired and the drawcord at the back can whip around. But that’s really it. 5/5

Value

You’re paying for premium fabric and design and wow, are you paying for it! Comfort yourself with the fact that it should really last. RRP £430. 3/5

Verdict

The Arc’teryx Beta AR is a top-end winter jacket, which is also light enough for year-round use – but at a very high price. 4.6/5